Month: September 2015

Book Haul: September 2015

Here follows my book haul for the month of September, 2015. All of these except for Ritus, Sanctum and Lycidas are ebooks. Included are  a few gifts, and ARCs from Netgalley .

NetGalley ARCS

the shock of night the secret life of winnie cox the paladin caper the Icarus Prediction the grace of kings the casquette girls the abyss sing down the stars silent cry queen revealed possession hell bound fated worlds of ink wishing for you times divide the war for the waking world black beauty becoming darkness awakening 24 hours

tell the story to its end the lost girltime to die2

Paperbacks (Dutch)

5 stars sanctum Lycidas

Dutch Ebooks

water en vuur ijs en steen alice in zombieland

Received From Curiousity Quills Press

perf6.000x9.000.indd the gateway through which they came department of magic

Received From Edelweiss

ghost eyes

Received From OnlineBookClub

kingdoms of hairpetah Bucelarii - Copy

Received From Author

in the days

The Rest

vengeance road ungodly the weight of feathers the traitor the tattooed heart the sleeping kind the singular the shadow behind the stars the secrets of blood and bone the hollow boy the drafter The contrary sorcerer_front mech.indd mirrored library of souls lady of magick crucible zero Ritter_BeastlyBones_jkt_COMP.indd air awakensdragon coast crows queen of shadowsuprootedmenagerietwelve kingsthe lazarus gatethe broken empire omnibus

prince of fools the liars key

How many books did you haul in September?


Review : The Girl with Ghost Eyes by M.H Boroson

Title: The Girl with Ghost Eyesghost eyes
Author: M.R Boroson
Publication Date: Nov 3, 2015
Genre: Fantasy

I received an ARC of this book for an honest review from the publisher through Edelweiss.

Goodreads Synopsis : It’s the end of the nineteenth century in San Francisco’s Chinatown, and ghost hunters from the Maoshan traditions of Daoism keep malevolent spiritual forces at bay. Li-lin, the daughter of a renowned Daoshi exorcist, is a young widow burdened with yin eyes—the unique ability to see the spirit world. Her spiritual visions and the death of her husband bring great shame to Li-lin and her father—and shame is not something this immigrant family can afford.
When a sorcerer cripples her father, terrible plans are set in motion, and only Li-lin can stop them. To aid her are her martial arts and a peachwood sword, her burning paper talismans, and a wisecracking spirit in the form of a human eyeball tucked away in her pocket. Navigating the dangerous alleys and backrooms of a male-dominated Chinatown, Li-lin must confront evil spirits, gangsters, and soulstealers before the sorcerer’s ritual summons an ancient evil that could burn Chinatown to the ground.
With a rich and inventive historical setting, nonstop martial arts action, authentic Chinese magic, and bizarre monsters from Asian folklore, The Girl with Ghost Eyes is also the poignant story of a young immigrant searching to find her place beside the long shadow of a demanding father and the stigma of widowhood. In a Chinatown caught between tradition and modernity, one woman may be the key to holding everything together.


Li-Lin ,Daoshist of the second ordination , daughter to an exorcist is a widow at at 20. She  is still mourning the death of her husband when she is asked to deliver a spirit passport to a ghost in the spirit realm.

She soon realises that this was a trap meant to turn her into an instument for the sole purpose of destroying her father.

Li-lin is however not going down without a fight. She will need her wits and her martial arts trainiit  complimented by Chinese magic if she is to defeat an evil the likes of which had not been seen for generations.


My Thoughts

I liked that only enough detail necessary to understand different terms and the magic system was used. This prevented the story from being bogged down with too much mindless detailing and ponderous world building.

The author gives a real feel of what it must be like for a widowed 20 year old Chinese immigrant. She is a victim of misogyny and racism and is constantly under-estimated and devalued. She not only has to consider how her actions will affect her but also the loss of ‘face’ to her father.

I really liked Li-Lin’s character. She finds herself between ‘a rock and a hard place’ and instead of choosing to walk away even when she thought she didn’t stand a chance, she did whatever she could,( even allowing ‘monsters’ to help her), for the benefit of the greater good . She did this at the risk of losing what little respect her father has for her and an uncertain future for herself.

The “monsters’ are brought to life through the author’s attention to detail and one is able to clearly form a picture of what they look like. Pretty soon, we come to realise that not all monsters are monstrous after all.


There is no shortage of action and we get to ‘see’ Li-Lin display her martial arts traing in fight scenes which were very vivid and easy to imagine. These scenes had just the right amount of details and were not too drawn out and unrealistic.

Li lin2

I had a hard time putting this book down and read it in a few hours. The action-packed scenes were very much appreciated by this reader.


4 stars


This was a fairly clean read making it suitable for younger readers. Lovers of fantasy, Asian Folklore, martial-arts, headstrong heroines, and  action-packed novels would enjoy this.

10 Steps To Get Out Of A Book Slump

I rarely find myself in a book slump, but whenever I do, it’s usually after reading a book that I had been eagerly anticipating and which exceeded or met my expectations. All other books, no matter how intriguing they would have seemed before, become unenticing. I would read a chapter or two and would find it impossible to ‘get into it’.

These are the steps I usually take to help me of a slump. If it’s a really bad one, I end up going through all of the steps and maybe even repeating a step or two.

In the famous words of Dr Seuss:

slumpWithout further ado :

  1. Re-read the book (or my favourite parts). Sometimes one just can’t get enough of a good ‘thing’. So, repeat!
    1 Reread the book
  2. Write (blog) about it, review it, rave about it to your reading buddies  to get it out of system.2 write about itwrite about it
  3. Take a break from reading, watch a movie you’ve been meaning to watch, or binge watch a favourite series.
    3 watch a moviewatch a movie3
  4. Go shopping for more books! New books are being released weekly, maybe you’ll come across one,( or ten ), that peak your interest!4 go shopping for more books
  5. Try a sub-genre or another genre altogether! Maybe you have just read one too many epic fantasy, try urban fantasy, or thrillers.
    5 try other genre
  6. See what your friends are reading or check out what’s on their TBRs. You might discover some good reads!6 what are your friends reading
  7. Go through your humongous pile of books; whether it be physical and or digital. ( I know you have a huge pile of books that you’ve been meaning to read for some time now) Read the synopses and maybe you’ll discover a hidden gem.7 tbr pile
  8. Try a graphic novel instead,(or a few), maybe one based on a novel you’ve already read!
    graphicnovel graphic novel3 graphic novel
  9. Re-read your favourite series (I have a fallback series, the Dresden Files) until you’ve had enough of that!
    9 reread fave series
  10. Read a series you loved in another language or another that you couldn’t get into for some reason. If you dont know another language, now might be a good time to learn one. If you’re not up for it, repeat step 3.

10 another language watch a movie4

What steps do you use? Do you have any others you would like to add? Leave a comment below.



Review: Time To Die by Caroline Mitchell

I received an ARC of this book for an honest review from the publisher, Bookouture,  through NetGalley.

Title: Time To Dietime to die

Author: Caroline Mitchell

Publication Date: Sept 24, 2015

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Goodreads Synopsis

Don’t ever cross his palm with silver.
He will reveal your most shameful secrets.
He will predict your death.
He is hiding a secret.
He is hiding a monster.
And all his predictions come true.
Investigating a series of chilling murders, Detective Jennifer Knight finds herself tracking a mysterious tarot card reader known only as The Raven.
As the death toll rises, Jennifer and her team build a picture of a serial killer on the edge of sanity, driven by dark forces. But these are not random killings. And the method behind the madness could be the most terrifying thing of all …
Especially when it seems the death of one of their own is on the cards.


An intriguing blend of mystery/thriller with the paranormal/supernatural, Time to Die follows Dc Jennifer Knight in her hunt for the killer called ‘The Raven’.

Dc Jennifer Knight has just joined the elite unit called Operation Moonlight , set up within the Haven CID department. This unit has been created to investigate strange deaths in Haven. Dc Jennifer Knight who is gifted is the perfect addition to this team and prettys soon she is investigating a group of deaths all seemingly linked to The Raven, who with his tarot cards had predicted the victims deaths with uncanny  accuracy.

With the hunt for the killer underway, he soon turns his sight to DC Jennifer..

My Thoughts

I really liked the dark, mysterious atmosphere the writer sucessfully created within this book. I thought the blending of the supernatural elements with the mystery and police procedural was well done,which elevated the story from common and generic to unique.

I liked the use of the ravens, which apart from being the killer’s moniker , were also used in a way which contibuted to the Poe-like  atmosphere. Ravens are after all often seen as harbingers of doom and are not birds anyone wants to see swarming outside their windows!


DC Jennifer was a solid character humanised through her OCD , and made interesting through the possession of her ‘gift’,and her interactions with her co-workers. She quickly makes the connectios between the strange deaths and The Raven but things are not as clear cut as they seemed and pretty soon she ends up on The Raven’s radar!

My favourite character was The Raven! He is a very complex character with an affinity for Ravens, and I liked peeking into his mind and being privy to his thoughts and desires .
We get to unfold over time what events have molded him into the killer he is, and I often found myself empathising with him. Dark outside forces grant him the  ability to see his victims’ past, present and future and boy oh boy, does he take pleasure in telling them their futures! He is not above giving a helping hand to make certain that said future comes to past. I would certainly not want to be a recipient of his fortune telling!
What can I say? I loved his creepy character!

The plot moved along at a steady pace and there were a lot of plot twists which kept me guessing and engaged. Even though I was able to  guess the final reveal, it did not impact my enjoyment. Not having read a thriller in a while, this was a great re-introduction to the genre.
All in all, an engrossing read and I won’t be look at another Raven without thinking of this book!


4 starsRecommend

I recommend this for everyone who likes mystery/thriller. I would urge you to put this one on your October TBR, perfect for Halloween!

Buy Links


Connect With The Author




A List: My Most Anticipated New Releases (Sept 22 – Dec 2015)

This is a list (incomplete) of books that have just been released and are to be released in the period from September 22 – December 31, 2015 that I would like to read and would be adding to my book hauls over time.

If you have any suggestions as to others you think I would be interested in reading please comment below.


  1. Library of Souls (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #3) by Ransom Riggs,  Published: Sept 22, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  2. This Monstrous Thing byf Mackenzie Lee, Published: Sept 22, 2015 (Goodreads Synopsis)
  3. Beastly Bones (Jackaby #2) by William Ritter, Published: Sept 22, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  4. Six of Crows (Crows #1) by Leigh Bardugo, Publication Date: Sept 29, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  5. Minotaur by Philip W. Simpson, Publication Date: Sept 29, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)

library of souls this monstrous thing Ritter_BeastlyBones_jkt_COMP.indd crows minotaur


  1. Shadows of Self (Mistborn #5) by Brandon Sanderson, Publication Date: Oct 6, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  2. The Rose Society (The Young Elites #2) by Marie Lu, Publication Date: Oct 6, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  3. It’s A Wonderful Death by Sarah J. Schmidt, Publication Date: Oct 6, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  4. An Inheritance of Ashes by Leah Bobet, Publication Date: Oct 6, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  5. Gatefather (Mither Mages #4) by Orson Scott Card, Publication Date:Oct 20, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)

shadows of self the rose society its a wonderful death inheritance of ashesgatefather


  1. Ten Thousand Skies Above You ( Firebird #2) by Claudia Gray,Publication Date: Nov 2, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  2. Winter ( The Lunar Chronicles #3) by Marissa Meyer, Publication Date: Nov 10, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  3. The Vanishing Throne ( The Falconer #2) byf Elizabeth May, Production Date: Nov 19, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)

the thousand skies winter the vanishing throne


  1. Blood Storm (The Books Of Blood And Iron) by Steven Harper, Publication Date: Dec 1, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  2. Frozen Tides ( Fallen Kingdoms #4) by Morgan Rhodes, Publication Date: Dec 15, 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)
  3. The Hellsblood Bride ( Mookie Pearl #2) by Chuck Wendig, Publication (?), 2015  (Goodreads Synopsis)

Blood Storm frozen tides hellsblood brideCheers.


Q&A With Andy Peloquin Author Of Blade Of The Destroyer

I recently had the opportunity and honour of a Q&A with Andy Peloquin, author of Dark Blade Of The Destroyer, which I read and reviewed.

Bioandy peloquin
Andy Peloquin: Lover of All Things Dark and Mysterious

Andy Peloquin–a third culture kid to the core–has loved to read since before he could remember. Sherlock Holmes, the Phantom of the Opera, and Father Brown are just a few of the books that ensnared his imagination as a child.

When he discovered science fiction and fantasy through the pages of writers like Edgar Rice Burroughs, J.R.R Tolkien, and Orson Scott Card, he was immediately hooked and hasn’t looked back since.

Andy’s first attempt at writing produced In the Days: A Tale of the Forgotten Continent. He has learned from the mistakes he made and used the experience to produce Blade of the Destroyer, a book of which he is very proud.

Reading—and now writing—is his favorite escape, and it provides him an outlet for his innate creativity. He is an artist; words are his palette.

His website ( is a second home for him, a place where he can post his thoughts and feelings–along with reviews of books he finds laying around the internet.

Here’s what he had to say:

1: Were you always interested in writing?
Since I was very young, writing has been my only way of expressing the creativity I have inside. I come from a very artistic family, but with no skills in the arts or music, writing is the way that I share myself with the world.
2: Are there any writers who inspire you?
I find myself drawn to the characters and stories of Scott Lynch. I aspire to make my writing as fascinating for others as his work was for me.
3: What have you written?
I have written two books. The first is a story set in Atlantis, before it sank into the ocean. The second is the first book in a series about a half-demon fantasy assassin with an accursed dagger that drives him to kill.
4:What genre are your books?
The Atlantis story was a mix of historical fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, and metaphysical, while the story about the assassin is very much grimdark/dark fantasy.
5:What draws you to that genre?
I like how it allows me to explore the underside of human nature. Instead of trying to write about people doing heroic things, I get to look at the things that drive people to do HORRIBLE things. That, for me, is far more fascinating!
6:What are you working on at the moment?
I have just submitted Book 2 in the series to the publisher, and it’s a continuation of the story of this assassin character–very much an anti-hero. I will continue work on Book 3 immediately.
7: When can we expect it to be released?
Book 2 should be released sometime in early 2016, with Book 3 hopefully coming out at the end of the same year.
8: Where do you find inspiration for the characters?
Everywhere! TV shows, movies, real life, books, comics, even video games. I don’t necessarily need to FIND the inspiration–it hits me over the head and demands that I add it into the book.
9: What is your writing process like? ( do u have a playlist)
My writing process is fairly simple. I have about an hour or so per day (around 10 hours per week, all told), so I make the most of that time. I’ll write anywhere from 1,000 to 2,500 words.
At this rate, a 120,000 word book takes me just over two months to write, and it goes through multiple drafts and edits. From conception to submission, it’s about six months of work.
My writing playlist is VERY eclectic. Selena Gomez, Skrillex, Five Finger Death Punch, and Simon and Garfunkel are all on the same playlist.
10: How important do you think the cover art is in marketing your book?
One of the most important things. Without a good cover, very few people will ever look at the words within your book. It’s the “face” that sells the rest!
11: What are you thoughts on reviews?
Vital, both for me and readers. I want to know how I can improve, and readers need to know what to expect.
12: Do you promote on social media?
I do. I use Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and my blog for marketing, interacting with people, and general promotions.
13: How can readers connect with you?
You can find me on all of my social media accounts:

14: Where can readers buy your books?

Check them out on Amazon, or, for those few lucky enough to live in San Diego, you can find them at the Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore.

His Work

cover Bucelarii - Copy

Purchasing info

In The Days: A Tale Of The Forgotten Continent:

Amazon Kindle

Blade Of The Destroyer:

Amazon Kindle
Amazon Paperbook
Amazon Canada



Review: Blade Of The Destroyer by Andy Peloquin

Title: Blade Of The DestroyerBucelarii - Copy
Author: Andy Peloquin
Publication Date: July 11, 2015
Genre: Dark Fantasy

I received a copy of this book for an honest review


An immortal assassin for hire without a past, the Hunter’s very name strikes terror into the hearts of the citizens of Voramis, and the thought of facing death at the end of his aptly named blade, Soulhunger, is enough to make the bravest tremble in fear.
Accepting what at first appeared to be just another contract, he is soon caught up in a web of deceit and betrayal which have disastrous repercussions and will cause him to question everything he thought he knew about the city where he plies his ‘trade’, while shedding light on who and what he really is.

Hunter gets around

My Thoughts

The city of Voramis, the main setting, is a medieval city. It is brought to life through rich, detailed descriptions and you can almost smell the air and feel the wind caressing our face. You get a good feeling of what life is life for the inhabitants, whether it is the power and avarice of the nobles or the poverty and desperation of the poor.

The story is told through the POV of the Hunter and we get unrestricted access to his thoughts. We get to experience firsthand his frustrations at not having memories of who he really is, the pleasure he gets from the bond with the blade Soulhunger whenever he takes a life and his compassion for those he has taken under his wings.
The story progresses at a steady pace with no shortage of action which holds your attention. Several plot twists keep you guessing which makes for a very captivating read. The fighting scenes were also very detailed and appears to be well researched. I got the sense of a graphic novel feel from it.

There is magic sublty interwoven within  the story but it is not predominant. This gives the story a more realistic feel and doesn’t leave the reader struggling to understand a complex magical system which lends to the overal smooth pace.

Expect some of this:

many teeth monster hunter battling the demonThere were a few minor issues that I came across although these did not impact my overall enjoyment.
In the opening chapter the writer uses the word ‘canopy’ when talking about the forest floor. There were also a couple of incidents where I felt that the Hunter was not true to his character. I know it was meant to demonstrate his humanity but it felt too farfetched.
I would have liked ‘the Hunter’ to have a real name but maybe that’s part of the whole mystery that is the Hunter and might be revealed in later books.
There is a curse phrase that was used throughout by almost everyone who had direct encounters with Hunter that I felt was overused and unimaginative. I just couldn’t see how everyone would use that same curse phrase time and time again.


Sin City meets Assassins Creed meets Priest (movie)!

assassins creed voramis2 HunterThis book deals with the issues of human nature, identity, self-discovery and finding one’s place in the world.
The Hunter’s character unfolds as the story progresses and although he seems invincible at first, we soon get to see his humanity. The author holds true to the essence of dark fantasy and does not hold back from killing off characters to create the necessary change and instigate the metamorphosis of his anti-hero.
In the end, a new Hunter is forged through the fires of betrayal, despair, grief, revenge, self-discovery and hope.

5 stars

I recommend this for lovers of dark fantasy, graphic novels and action packed scenes. Fans of Mark Lawrence’s Broken Empire series and fans of Scott Lynch should find this interesting.

Purchase your Copy
Amazon Kindle
Amazon Paperbook
Amazon Canada

Add it your Goodreads Shelves here :


OFFICIAL COVER REVEAl: Secrets in Phoenix by Gabriella Lapour

Review: Brazen (Gilded #3) by Christina Farley

Title: Brazen (Gilded #3)Brazen
Author: Christina Farley
Expected Publication: Sept 29, 2015 by Amazon Publishing

I received an ARC of this book for an honest review from the publisher  through NetGalley.

Goodreads Synopsis

Sworn to an ancient god of darkness, Jae Hwa fights to gain her freedom and restore the balance of Korea… but first she must gain back the trust of her loved ones.
Jae Hwa Lee spent her sixteenth year in Seoul, trying to destroy the evil immortals who had been torturing her family for centuries. The last thing she expected was to be forced to become their assassin. Trapped in the darkest part of the Spirit World as a servant to the Korean god Kud, fighting to keep her humanity, and unable to contact her loved ones, Jae Hwa is slowly losing hope. Kud, god of darkness, will do anything to keep her as a pawn in his quest for power over all of Korea, her entire family thinks she’s dead, and Jae’s true love, Marc, believes she is lost to him forever.
When Kud sends Jae to find and steal the powerful Black Turtle orb, Jae sees an opportunity to break free and defeat Kud once and for all…but first she needs to regain Marc’s trust and work with him to vanquish the darkness that threatens to overwhelm Korea. There’s much to lose as Jae struggles to save the land she’s come to call home


The story begins with everyone thinking Jae Hwa is dead. She is not dead however but is trapped in the spirit world and forced to serving Kud, the very evil she wants to defeat. She now bears his mark in an effort to protect her loved ones and to save her homeland, Korea.

How will she able to convince Marc that she is on the side of good while bearing the mark of the evil that is Kud? Will she have the strength and resolve to stand against Kud for the good of Korea and the whole world? She won’t have a choice!

My Thoughts

Jae Hwan is a strong decisive and noble character with a no-holds bar attitude and fighting style. She is far from perfect but is fiercely loyal to her friends and family and combines brains and brawn to the detriment of those who would try to hurt them.

manga girl bow

There are no shortages fo fighting scenes and the story moves along at a quick pace which leaves no room for boredom. The author’s attention to detail is remarkable and really serves to  bring the spirit world and its inhabitants to life with vivid descriptions and imagery.

There is a definite manga feel to this novel combined with elements of asian folklore to deliver an action packed read and engrossing read.

My Rating

4 stars

I would recommend this to lovers of manga, and anyone who loves their books filled with fast- paced action and a butt-kicking heroine.


Review: The Deathsniffer’s Assistant

Title: The Deathsniffer’s Assistantdeathsniffer
Author: Kate McIntyre
Publication: July 13, 2015 by Curiosity Quills Press
Genre: Fantasy

I received a copy of this book for an honest review from the publisher Curiosity Quills Press through NetGalley.


Set in an alternate world where magic, once predominant, is now on the decline , The Deathsniffer’s Assistant is an intriguing and eclectic mix of magic and mystery with a hint of steampunk.

The main protaganist, Christopher Buckley is a 19 year old orphan whose parents have been dead for 6 years . They, along with hundreds more, met their demise in the Floating City incident where spiritbinding backkfired, resulting in a catastrophe. He as the older sibling is faced with the responsibilty of taking care of his 13 year old sister Rosemary on an ever dwindling budget.

Rosemary has this increasingly rare, valued and sought after ability called spiritbinding and this in a society where people are ‘categorised’ based on their magical abilities  and mythical creatures are forced into servitude with the help of these spiritbinders . Cognizant of the dangers involved in her being discovered at such a tender age, Christopher tries to prevent her from using her abilities in such a way as to cause discovery., which was becoming increasingly difficult since she is a headstrong girl.

Christopher is very much concerned with his societal standing and wants to hold on to his family’s estate . He goes about solliciting for a job and the only job he is granted an interview for is that of a Deathsniffers’s Apprentice. He is interviewed and gets the job.

A Deathsniffer investigates murders with her powers for sniffing out truth and is thus involved in the grimier seedier parts of society. This is of major concern to Christopher since he is afraid of being ostracized but the pay is very good and since he is only  a wordweaver who is able to take notes by thinking them, he is only fit for clerical work. Unfortunately his employer Olivia Faraday, rubs him the wrong way. She is the very opposite of him. She doesn’t care about societal rules and conventions and is brusque and direct in her dealings with others.

After only a few days of taking up his position of deathsniffer’s apprentice, he becomes embroiled in a murder mystery which is more than what it seems.

My Thoughts

  • Christopher’s character felt a bit overshadowed by Olivia Faraday. This is because of her iron-clad will and propensity to be direct to the point of being considered rude and unconventional.  I connected with her because I saw a bit of myself in her.
  • The magical system was very well crafted and original. There are various mythical creatures as well as magically gifted human with varying abilities. The creatures’ abilities are used to power  machinery, lights, and even transports.
  • The murder mystery and its solving was also very well thought out and executed. The whole process from discovery to investigation and finally uncovering the murderer’s identity kept me guessing which is necessary in a good mystery.
  • I liked that there was another conspiracy taking place in the background, having to do with different factions within the society. There are questions about the Floating City incident; was it an accident? There is also the failing of the categorisation process which all adds to the intrigue and overal mystery of the book and creates an opening for future sequels.

My Rating

4 stars

I would recommend it to lovers of fantasy and mystery and fans of Sherlock Holmes.

Available on Amazon for Kindle